With these six symphonies dedicated to Baron van Swieten, Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach demonstrated his talent for instrumental and expressive genius. Entirely devoid of sentimentality and gratuitous extravagance, they open the doors to both Viennese Classicism and its immediate successor: Romanticism. It was only natural that, after tackling Haydn and the Esterházy princes, Amandine Beyer and Gli Incogniti should investigate this repertoire in which, once again, aristocratic patronage lies at the heart of musical creation.
During his first years in the service of the Esterházy princes, Joseph Haydn had every opportunity to show what he was capable of accomplishing as both instrumental soloist (on violin or keyboard) and composer; in fact, all his concertos, most of which date from the 1760s, offer a glimpse of a brilliant artist who gradually moved away from the style galant by inventing a new musical dialogue soon to become the Classical style.
This double album offers a portrait of the violinist Amandine Beyer drawn from the recordings she has made for ZZT. The first CD selects highlights from her chamber repertoire, including works by Jean-Féry Rebel, Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, Nicola Matteis, and Robert de Visée. The second is devoted to the concerto, with compositions by Johann Sebastian Bach, Antonio Vivaldi, and Arcangelo Corelli. This programme is an ideal introduction to the multiple facets of Amandine Beyer’s talent and to the grace and joie de vivre of her music-making. It also provides an opportunity to discover one of Corelli’s Concerti Grossi op.6, a preview of the complete set to be released on ZZT in the autumn of 2013.
The Sablé festival, held annually in Sablé-sur-Sarthe in France, has its own recording concern that it uses primarily to expose young early music artists and to support the most interesting of their projects; the Zig-Zag Territoires label provides an outlet for this endeavor. Here is a wholly worthy enterprise: the group Gli Incogniti – led by the fabulous young violinist Amandine Beyer – in a program drawn from various works of mysterious late seventeenth-century violinist Nicola Matteis, its title, False Consonances of Melancholy, fashioned after one of his publications, but not limited to its contents. As Matteis is not a household name, some summary of his place in the scheme of things is not out of order here: born in Naples, possibly contemporary to Heinrich von Biber, Matteis was an itinerant musician in Germany before making his way to London about 1670.
Rosenmüller, a prodigiously talented German musician and composer, found himself imprisoned in Leipzig for obscure ‘sex offences’: had his presence there become embarrassing? But he managed to escape to Hamburg, then reached the free and ‘Most Serene’ Republic of Venice, where he eventually taught at the Ospedale della Pietà, long before Vivaldi.